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Coal Cinder
While touring the Roanoke Transportation Museum we saw old coal fired engines. Scattered on the ground about them were some funny looking "rocks". Today's generation likely has no idea that those rocks are "cinders" and the leftovers from burning coal. Back in the day when people burned coal at home cinders scattered on the driveway were common. Today most homes don't burn coal but some power plants do. The coal we see heading south on the Norfolk Southern trains is going to supply, partially at least, Duke's Belews Creek power plant near Winston-Salem. Ash from burning coal releases trace amounts of arsenic, lead, mercury, cadmium, chromium, uranium, thorium, and selenium, as well as aluminum, antimony, barium, beryllium, boron, chlorine, cobalt, manganese, molybdenum, nickel, thallium, vanadium, and zinc. Scientific American Magazine states that burning coal releases more uranium than a nuclear powered plant.

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